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Families Again
Wednesday, 16 December 2009
Mathletics - Well Paint Me Green and Call Me Gumby!
Mood:  incredulous
Topic: Homeschool Product Review


Ok! I know! Another catchy title to try to get you to read my post. Actually, though, it does exemplify how I feel about this product.

I must admit, that when, as a member of the TOS Homeschool Crew, I was given a free 45 day membership to Mathletics to try out and review it on my blog, I signed John Allen up and let him have at it. Every once in a while I looked over his shoulder, and I knew he was loving it, but I didn't really explore it or research the site...until today! And what I found did make me feel incredulous! I thought that Mathletics was just another one of those resources where my child would be challenged and race against others and get points, etc. etc. However, what I found was that it is so much more! It is a whole curriculum. Your child could use Mathletics as your one and only math curriculum! 

Now, we are on our fourth year of homeschooling, and I have probably spent $100s maybe $1000s of dollars on curriculum and resources. I know how much curriculum costs. Good math curriculum can be one of the most expensive things that you purchase each year. Let me give an example that even a non-homeschooler that doesn't purchase curriculum can understand:

You've all seen those cutsie math supplemental books that you can get at Wal-Mart. They are great to use as a supplement at home when your child is having some difficulty at school, or perhaps to use during the summer to keep information fresh. They can cost anywhere from $2 or $3 a piece on up, and are nice, but each book is usually specialized and doesn't usually cover all the things that you need. If you wanted to buy a book for everything studied in a particular school year, it would cost upwards of $40 or $50.

Those are just for those little books at the discount stores. Good homeschool math curriculum can cost two or three times that much. How would you like a good curriculum that only cost $40 or $50 that has all the books you need for prek-12th grade! Well, I don't usually publish the cost for something until the end of my review, but Mathletics is such a great deal, that I am going to tell you now. The price used to be $99, but now it is $59 for a years membership. But, let me give you secret. If you will read the rest of my review, I'll tell you how to get it for even cheaper than that! That would be over 12 years of math books! And they are great. Let me give you an example from the Fractions and Percentages book that I downloaded for John Allen:



Now, let me tell you about the main part of the Mathletics program! Yes, I said main. No, the above was not the main! The main part of the program is all on the computer and is based on points. The first thing that you do after registering your child is to pick a grade level for that child. Don't worry, because if you find that a grade level is too easy or difficult for that child, you can change it. You have six chances to change it throughout the year, so after you have gotten the correct level, if the child aces that level in less than a year, you can move him up a level. When you are settled on that, you choose a concept for your child to learn. If he thinks that he knows that concept, he can go straight to the questions or have them explained it to him. When he get to the questions, Mathletics will give him a series of 10 problems. For every problem he gets correct, he will get 10 points. His goal is to get 1000 points in one week. If he can achieve that, he earns a bronze medal. After so many bronze medals he earns a silver medal and after so many silvers he gets a gold - you get the picture.


Another way your child can earn points is through the Mathletics race section (see the above picture). He can challenge an opponent from anywhere around the world. John Allen has gone against kids from Australia, Britain, the US - all over! During the races, you earn 2 points per problem, but you answer them quickly and can do as many problems as you can within a certain time limit. But, watch out, if you miss so many in row, your part of the race automatically stops. John Allen loves this, because it's a quick way to earn points, and it also helps him with speed.

But, earning medals isn't really the big thing! You can actually be ranked in the top 100 students in the world or the US depending on how many points you have earned in one day. Your name, school and country are displayed on the Mathletics website for all to see! One of the TOS Homeschool Crew members had a child that was ranked first in the world for a little while one day, and ended up in the top 10 for that day! What a thrill!

The $59 per year is worth it just for that part, let alone all of the books that you can download. And, I haven't talked about the parent section, and the video walkthroughs and the...! I mentioned that you can only change your grade level 6 times in one year, but you can download books from any grade level at any time during that year! But wait! I said that if you read my whole review, I would tell you how to get it for even cheaper than that. Well, on the registration page, there is a special box that says "What is a calculater's favorite number?" if you answer correctly then you get a years membership for $49.00! $10 less!. I won't tell you the answer, but if you think of the number that comes after 8 you will be close. You know...that number that comes before 10 and if you turn it upside down it looks like a 6? That's the one! Such a deal. To get to the Mathletics website just press here or on any one of the hi-lighted links above. To find out what the other TOS crew members think about Mathletics, click here. I think that Mathletics is fantastic. So fantastic that I have signed John Allen up for a whole year since his 45 days have expired. They have a free 10 day trial on their website. Try it out and you might be saying "Well paint me green and call me Gumby"! Happy homeschooling.

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Posted by tink38570 at 2:39 PM CST
Updated: Thursday, 17 December 2009 12:44 AM CST
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